Sunday, April 3, 2011

Another Opinion

Sometimes I look. Sometimes I don't.
And from both ways, I find things to share.

I did find a post that references writing reviews. I want to be fair and share whatever I find to help others. I'm posting this link because I think there is a valid point. That being said:

Enjoy a post on writing reviews by Adrienne Wilder

My reaction?
I don't know much about dogs or dog judging and I think I got a little lost in all of that but in a nutshell, I think she was trying to say that one of the things books should be rated on is their adherence to their genre. If a Regency has 21st century verbage or ideals, and because of the strict rules regarding writing in that period, the review's ratings are going to reflect that immediately.
I think that's what she said.
What do you think?


Beth Caudill said...

I think too many rules can spoil anything. As it is a lot of writers have a hard time defining what genre they are writing.

Let's take witches. A witch can be in a Contemporary, Fantasy, Paranormal, or Urban Fantasy story. Does the fact that she is a witch determine which subgenre she is in? No. It's how the author has crafted the world building and the significance of these elements.

I have one witch story and it is classified as a fantasy. Why? Because it's missing the suspense and dark angst associated with paranormals. And because being a witch and using powers is a part of the world building it isn't a straight contemporary. But you have to see the writing all together. You can't go through a checklist that says

Takes place in a city.
Has a witch.
Told in 3rd person
Has a villian

None of these things tells you whether or not you have a contemporary story involving someone who practices Wicca as a religion and it's a contemporary romance or if magic is a way of life and your heroine saves the day.

Xeranthemum said...

Beth, wow, thank you VERY much for your awesome comment!

And, you bring up a very valid point.

Also, I found it odd that your witch story was labeled fantasy - does your witch use magic? If so, I would have been guilty of labeling it paranormal - I don't think the lack of darkness and/or suspense negates the paranormal tag. Perhaps if there were a 'supernatural' tag, I would be more inclined to use that but paranormal seems to be the catch-all word to use in most reviews when it comes to anything 'other' that happens on this planet.

Fantasy for me, means otherworld, outer space or more fae dimension in nature.

It really seems like it's all up to interpretation doesn't it? Decades ago, everthing was so stringent. I'm actually enjoying the refreshing mix we get nowadays.

Thank you, Beth, for making such an eloquent and interesting counterpoint. :-)